I never want to forget Carter's little sign on his bedroom door, that says "KEEP OUT, except Daddy."
Or the way San Diego has an early spring and an insane amount of wild flowers.
I want to remember the butterfly stickers in Ellie's room, that we 'booped' every night, and sometimes in the morning.
I know when we leave here, we are leaving her crib. So all those mornings I walk in to find her with her blanket balled up in the corner as a pillow, belly down, dolly in a headlock in her left arm, toes pointed, saying "scratch my back mommy," are coming to an end. The same way her brother does, she will pop out of bed bright and early, and won't wait for me to wake her up.
I will NEVER forget how Fatima taught me that even at the age of 27, you can make best friends at the playground, just by saying, "hi."
I want to remember tucking Carter in, Blankey laid on his pillow, hugging Dinoco, T-bone at his back- precisely the same way, every night. By the time we get to HI, the routine will change, I just know it.
I want to remember the random pictures of Chris taped to the bedroom walls, and the sweet way the kids used to kiss them goodnight during the past two years while he was almost never home.
And the cupboard in my kitchen, plastered in stickers that has held up to five children at one time.
I don't want to forget the way a fluffy cloud can remind me that for days and days, I have seen nothing but blue skies.
I don't want to forget how to run. I want to remember running the trails with Connie, her daughter riding her bike beside us- I was ready to puke. We were close to the end, and her daughter was ready to give up, and she grabbed her daughters handle bars, ran beside her dragging her uphill and told her, "we aren't quitters." People come and go from our lives all the time, and you never really know why you lives cross paths. I know why God put Connie in my life.
I want to remember Balboa. I don't know a more beautiful spot to take pictures, walk with friends, play with kids, have coffee. I could live there, I really could.
I hope I never forget Ellie's pet "speck" that she made when she learned to crawl up the stairs. That smudge three steps up has been told 'goodnight,' every night, for the past 16 months. She never forgets her Speck.
I want to see the Rhinoculous and strawberry fields again, of course only if Courtney comes with me. Every time I see Miss Corney, my abs are sore the next day. Isn't that the best kind of friend to have?
I want to NEVER forget the YMCA pool, and how much kids sleep after playing in the water. That pool was the perfect size, the splash area was the most fun, and I spent countless days watching Ellie walk on her tiptoes, nose up trying to keep her head underwater, and not really caring if it goes under anyways.
I want to remember what it feels like to have such close knit friends like this. I thought I had good friends at home, then I came here. I said I love pictures, and I had Andrea push me into classes and buy me inspirational books. Friends inspire you.
California inspires you.
My home where Carter grew from toddler to boy, and Ellie from baby to toddler inspired more smiles then I am ready to forget.